Fingerstyle Guitar

Fingerstyle is a guitar technique synonymous with finger picking. It involves the picking of guitar strings with the fingertips, fingernails, or picks attached to the fingertips as opposed to using a flat-pick. Fingerstyle allows the musician to produce several stylistic elements at once including arpeggios, harmonics, and chords. This is because the individual fingers are acting independently rather then the hand working as a single unit. Therefore, a musician using the fingerstyle technique can cover several musical parts that would normally need to be played by several other band members. This technique can cover the melody, bass, harmonic accompaniment, and even percussion. Fingerstyle was adopted from the lute, a distant variation of the guitar from Spain, Italy, and Portugal. It is popular in the jazz, ragtime, folk, flamenco, and blues genres.


History: an article on the origins of the fingerstyle technique complete with a video clip.

Fingerpicking: an overview of the fingerstyle technique.

Learn Fingerstyle

Pick and Fingerstyle Technique: tips on the fundamentals and development of finger picking.

Master Workshop: a guide to jazz chords for the fingerstyle guitar.

Tuning Tutorial: step by step instructions to tuning a fingerstyle guitar.

Steady Bass: a how-to for the steady bass fingerstyle technique.

Arpeggios and Fingerstyle Guitar: an overview of the right hand style that plays one string at a time.

Fingerstyle Blues: a compilation of 10 fingerstyle blue lessons complete with sheet music.

Compositions and Arrangements

Fingerstyle Tabs: an extensive listing of different genres and difficulty levels for fingerstyle.

Elizabeth MacDermott Roe: a celtic fingerstyle arrangement.

Flowers of Edinburgh: an arrangement for the fingerstyle technique.

The Lea Rig: an acoustic arrangement for fingerstyle technique.

Fingerstyle Arrangements: a listing of over 100 different arrangements.

Fingerstyle Tabs and Notations: the guitar parts to 26 different songs.

Articles and Resources

At the Center of the Fingerstyle Guitar Universe: overview of the University of Wisconsin professor who has been the leading force in the school's fingerstyle reputation.

Fingerstyle: tips for choosing a guitar for the fingerstyle technique.

Fingerstyle Acoustic Guitarists: notable fingerstyle artists arranged in alphabetical order.

The Sickness: a humorous article about fingerstyle addiction.

Acoustic Guitar: a resource page for fingerstyle acoustic guitar.

Improvisation: a step-by-step guide to solo fingerstyle improv.

More Guitar Links

Teaching Guitar: helpful hints for teaching all techniques of guitar playing.

Electric Guitar: the invention of the electric guitar and the ways it revolutionized the music world.

International Guitar Research Guide: a database of noted artists and digital recordings.

Chords and Lyrics: a rock and folk compilation of guitar musics with chords and lyrics.

Guitar Acoustics: research on the vibrations of guitars.

Alternative Tuning Guide: an overview of open, instrumental, special, and regular tunings.

Transcriptions for Guitar: a complete listing of guitar music and lyrics.

Jazz Guitar History: information on notable jazz guitarists.